Painful Lessons

We need to avoid the spot in life where punishment is the normal process of learning (Hebrews 12:5-11). God himself will discipline a believer to correct us and put us back on a track. When our walk is right the normal relationship is characterized by obedience and blessing. Trials do come, but they are part of the kindness of God as he refines us into the image of Christ. To be clear, Paul raises this issue in the context of dealing with those who would be inclined to rest in their spirituality (Philippians 3:15). These are likely critics who like to tell everyone else how to behave. Christians who are actually running the race don’t have time to judge the technique of other runners. The focus is in the prize. Even Paul has only so much time to correct the wayward Philippians who were being derailed. Essentially he hands them over to God for correction. God loves them even more than Paul and he will be faithful to discipline them according to his will.

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